New fish and Novak Djokovic

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer Following the recent death of the last fish (Jezebel the alarmingly aggressive goldfish) from my original 2003 fish tank setup, I cleaned out the aquarium and started over this weekend.

But, before I get to my new fish, I want to mention the U.S. Open 2007 men’s final. This was the first match I’ve watched on TV in a while. Novak Djokovic gave Roger Federer a great run for his money, but ultimately tightened up on big points and couldn’t convert his set point opportunities. The 20-year-old lost two heartbreaking sets in tiebreakers after having set points in each. And so, in the end, “Federer grabs fourth straight U.S. Open win, 12th career Grand Slam title.”

Eli the cat But Novak Djokovic is undeniably an interesting and engaging personality. While he may not be the U.S. Open champion (yet), Serbian player Djokovic is certainly the champion of tennis star impersonations. He has the mannerisms down of a lot of current and former stars. If you’re familiar with professional tennis, you will enjoy this YouTube video of Djokovic’s antics: Impressions at Queens 2007 (Roddick, Hewitt, Nadal, Sharapova, Sampras, Ivanisevic) . . . and also his locker room impressions at the U.S. Open 2007. There are many more of these Djokovic videos.

OK, back to my new fish. I’m starting the tank out with three fancy/fantail guppies (a red cobra male, a sunrise female, and a blue female) and a small common plecostomus (which is an algae-eating suckermouth catfish).

I also have a blue-green male betta named Akira that I’ve been keeping in a separate bowl since I got him in December 2006. In the near future I plan to release the betta into the regular aquarium, as Eli the cat (see inset photo) has been far too interested in the delicious betta’s living quarters. (Eli was also quite interested in watching the U.S. Open final on TV; he likes to play with tennis balls and carry them in his mouth by the yellow fuzz.)

Below are some photos of the new fish from yesterday and today. First are a couple of shots from when the plastic bags were still floating at the top of the aquarium. The male guppy is of course the fanciest, but the two females are exceptionally brightly colored as well:

Fancy guppies Fancy guppies

Note: I bought two female guppies because only having a pair of guppies will usually result in a stressed-out female, from being chased and overbred by the male. Now this guy has two ladies to chase.

Here’s one more plastic bag shot and a photo of the plecostomus already going to work on the aquarium decor (which was not scrubbed thoroughly in my attempt to avoid “New Tank Syndrome” and retain a portion of the previously established nitrogen cycle bacteria):

Fancy guppies Plecostomus

The fish are free to swim about, like canaries in the coalmine that is my reestablished aquarium setup:

Fancy guppies Fancy guppies

Well, they’re all free except for Akira the betta, who will be trapped in his bowl for a bit longer; until I’m sure the new tank setup is cycling and free of disease (by the way, getting a good photo through a small circular bowl has a high degree of difficulty):

Male betta Male betta

In the next few weeks, I plan to add one or more of the following to the aquarium (haven’t decided yet): pineapple swordtail, black swordtail, tuxedo platy, marigold platy, blue dwarf gourami. That will give me a nice population. Which hopefully I won’t kill due to inadequate nitrogen cycling. I know the pH and water temperature will be fine and I am using the same filter, gravel, and decor from my previously cycled tank. But maybe I should change out a gallon of water every couple of days as an added precaution.

Tune in for next episode of: “Is my aquarium actually cycled or is everything gonna die?”

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